Paragon Cause
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Paragon Cause

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2017 | SELF

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Established on Jan, 2017
Duo Alternative Indie





Two stand out tracks besides the opener (Someone Else) are “Save Me,” where Wagner essentially challenged the band to write their version of a Ramones song (the outcome was their second single and music video) and the EPs outro, and “Drop Me In,” which tonally is much different than the five songs previous. It’s stripped down, with a soft guitar progression, and gorgeous layered vocal harmonies with words that will put warmth in your chest. - The East

"3 new songs you need to hear this week"

Paragon Cause's newest track Drop Me In is a little subversive, just for how understated it initially feels. It starts slow, but continuously builds throughout. There are also some seriously gorgeous harmonies here. - CBC Canada

"Review of Lies Between Us by Paragon Cause"

For a debut EP, Paragon Cause tried a new formula over a classic one and really mixed it well together. The interesting mix of musical styles throughout, combined with the dark and moody melodies are something for anyone to enjoy, and the vocals on top of all that is marvelous. With an album set for a 2020 release, I know I will be keeping an eye out once it drops. - Canadian Beats

"5 Questions for Paragon Cause"

Together they’ve put together a spectacular sound rich with melodies, catchy hooks, and an organic vibe. The collaboration is striking. - The Reviews are In

"Album reviews: September 2, 2019"

Like Nine Inch Nails with a different ear for sonic space, Paragon Cause creates harsh but often inviting synth pop. Heavy and dark, this is a listen that will excite pop and rock heads with equal delight. - Ottawa Life

"Indie Roundup (23 & Me Edition)"

Looking for a new band to love? Meet Paragon Cause, an indie-electronica duo from Ottawa. Guitarist and songwriter Jay Bonaparte and singer-keyboardist Michelle Opthop are gearing up to release their EP Lies Between Us on Sept. 3. But first, they’re dropping in to drop the single and video for Drop Me In, produced by one of their musical heroes: Sune Rose Wagner of Danish dream-popsters The Ravonettes. - The Tinnitist

"Lies Between Us"

Lies Between Us feels deeper and more emotionally complex with each listen, which is how it’s been designed. Bonaparte and Opthop have brought together a mix of music styles that would seem conflicting and dissonant, but they make it work. Incorporating 1980s synth sounds with jangly 1950s guitar runs, laced with jazz piano chords, hip hop backbeat, the EP is as atmospheric as it is interesting. - Spill Magazine

"Unique Voices"

Now for a unique female Canadian voice, vocalist/keyboardist Michelle Othop is half of Ottawa’s Paragon Cause, Along with guitarist/songwriter Jay Bonaparte, the two are releasing their latest EP, Lies Between Us on September 3. It is the first of what will be a series of releases leading up to a full-length album, expected in 2020. Have a listen to the single, Drop Me In from the forthcoming EP (which was produced by Sune Rose Wagner of Danish pop/alternative sensations, The Raveonettes). - Addicted

"Indie Midlands Review of Save Me"

Musically ‘Save Me’ reminds me of 80’s acts like the late Kirsty Maccoll and to a degree Voice Of The Beehive. All be it with a fuzzier guitar sound. - Indie Midlands

"Alan Cross Music Picks"

Undiscovered Gem – Paragon Cause, Lost Cause

This electro-pop/indietronica duo from Ottawa released a brand new ten-track record this week. For fans of the dark and mysterious side of bands like The Cure, Portishead, and, er, The Beach Boys. - Global News

"The Seeker Interview with Paragon Cause"

Ottawa, Ontario – Paragon Cause, an indie-electronica duo based out of Ottawa, is comprised of songwriter and guitarist Jay Bonaparte and vocalist and keyboardist Michelle Opthof. They are releasing a new single and video for the song “Drop Me In” at The Blacksheep Inn in Wakefield, Quebec on July 19th. The song is off their new EP titled “Lies Between Us” which is being released on September 3rd, 2019. Sune Rose Wagner of The Raveonettes produced the album, it was mastered by Joe LaPorta, and it was recorded at Neko Studios in Ottawa.

Before Paragon Cause, Jay played in Rose Cousins with Joel Plasket drummer Benn Ross and he was also admitted to medical school. While Michelle completed a music degree at Carleton University, dabbled in musical theatre, and played events like weddings.

“Prior to Paragon Cause, I played with Rose Cousins for 3 or 4 years back in Halifax. We both started playing live shows together along with Thrush Hermit/Joel Plasket drummer Benn Ross. We recorded two unreleased albums together prior to her getting famous and wining Juno’s. After that I played with a band called Servo, a damn cool rock/blues band, plus some other groups including Caledonia,” Jay said. - The Seeker Newspaper


What We Started (2020) - LP
Produced by Sune Rose Wagner

Lies Between Us (2019) - EP
Produced by Sune Rose Wagner

Ambient Excuses (2019) - EP
Produced by Paragon Cause

Escape (2018)
Produced by Paragon Cause



When creativity meets talent, drive, and encouragement from a valued
mentor, the results can be spectacularly successful and incredibly

Ottawa-based ethereal alternative/electro-pop duo Paragon Cause are such
a case, as their new full-length album, What We Started, is a
powerfully bold statement by a band that is brimming with confidence and
artistic zeal.

Coming less than a year after the release of their EP Lies Between Us,
it sees the dynamic musical duo of Michelle Opthof and Jay Bonaparte
reunite with producer/songwriter Sune Rose Wagner, a Danish pop music
legend, best known for his band The Raveonettes. Together, over an
intensive and intensely collaborative session in the fall of 2019, they
composed, arranged and produced an collection of 10 exceptional new
songs, that highlight the magical way Paragon Cause have evolved as
artists, developing a style and sound that is imbued with emotional
darkness, light and plenty of shades of grey.

Wagner had been a long-time idol of both Opthof and Bonaparte, but this
time around, they were less star-struck and approached the sessions that
would lead to What We Started with a heightened level of confidence and
focus in their own abilities, seeing Wagner now as more of a valued senior collaborator.

“The first session, that led to last year’s EP, we didn’t feel as open
and free because we were getting to know each other, we were learning
how to work and collaborate together. For the new album, we were a lot
looser, there was better communication and I think we all felt a lot
more comfortable interacting with each other. This time he was a more
active creative collaborator, as opposed to being a producer overseeing
everything. It was like he became like a third member of the band,” said

“For me, I found Sune was able to pull the best performances and the
best ideas out of us this time around because we were a lot more open
and he was also allowing us so much freedom to explore our ideas. He has
this amazing way of boosting your confidence, and so I went into the
process for this new album feeling so fresh and empowered,” added
Opthos, who is the band’s lyricist and usually sets the melodic tone for
each song.

While Lies Between Us was an excellent release in its own right, both
members of Paragon Cause believe they have stepped up their
compositional skills, their desire to be more experimental and their
thematic focus to an all-new level with What We Started. The songs are
infused with a sense of urgency, an unmistakable heightened level of
energy and fire – a delightfully jagged edge that comes from an open and
spontaneous songwriting process.

“Most of the songs were written and recorded that same day or the day
before, and all of them were based on just one little idea that we ran
with. So, this album is very spontaneous, that’s why there is a lot of
energy. Songs like “See You Suffer” and “Time for Action” were literally
written the night before we recorded them,” Bonaparte explained.

Band Members